Newsletter Contents

Click for Pastor’s article
Click for St. Stephen’s Calendar
Click for Serving Schedule

Some Summer Thoughts, Financial Report, VBS, Congratulations, Thank You Notes, Looking Ahead, Prayers, “Pub Theology”.


Some Summer Thoughts on Fruit-bearing


In the fifteenth chapter of John’s Gospel is the familiar passage where Jesus speaks of the Vine and its branches.  “I am the Vine, you are the branches,”  he says. And he promises that those who remain in the Vine, will “bear much fruit.”  Obviously, branches that separate from the Vine will dry up and wither away.  “Apart from me, you can do nothing,”  Jesus tells us.  Sometimes when we read this passage we tend to miss the main point.  It is not that “if we don’t bear fruit, we will be cast off.”  It is “only by being attached to the Vine (Jesus) that we can bear fruit.”

A few verses prior to this passage (in John 14), Jesus says, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”  One could read this (as I always used to) in the manner that a mother or father might say to a child, “If you love me, you will do what I say.”  But lately I have begun to read it as in “if you are alive, you will breathe.”  The second part flows naturally from the first.  It’s not really a matter of choice at this point. You just can’t help it.  If you love Jesus, really love him and abide in him (the Vine), you can’t help but keep his commandment, which is to love God and others – to bear fruit for the Lord.  The sap, the life of the Vine, the Love of Christ, the Grace of God, flows from God through us and produces the fruit – the “good works which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.” (Ephesians 2:10)

Suggested summer reading:  John chapters 14 & 15, and Ephesians chapter 2.)

May we all have a peaceful, joyous, and FRUITFUL summer!!!



*                   *                   *                   *                   *



Financial Report 2013 vs. 2012


Budget Income Month of May 2013                                      $11,277.50

Budget Income Month of May 2012                                       $8,647.25


Budget Income YTD 2013                                                     $52,271.50

Budget Income YTD 2012                                                     $54,436.00



*                   *                   *                   *                   *    




“Everywhere Fun Fair”


Where God’s World comes together

August 5th – 9th

6:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Pre-K – 6th grade

*                   *                   *                   *                   *  

Congratulations to Brian McCarthy


Brian McCarthy became an Eagle Scout on March 11th, 2013.  He had his Eagle Ceremony on June 1st.  He completed his Eagle Scout Project on June 30th, 2012.  The project was building a shed for the St. Stephen Parsonage House.  The shed serves as a way to hold maintenance tools and supplies used for the parsonage.  Before the shed was erected, all supplies mentioned had to be stored inside the home’s one car garage.  This posed a problem for Pastor when he wanted to park his car in the garage.  Brian is honored that his project was able to impact the church in a positive way.



*                   *                   *                   *                   *



Thank You Notes


Hello I would just like to take a moment to thank you for the scholarship I received this past Sunday at Church. With tuition costs and everything every little bit helps. Thank you again.


-Allison Yuschik




To St. Stephen Lutheran Church,


Thank you for awarding me one of the Church Scholarships.  Christ has helped me get to where I am today, and will continue to support and guide me as I begin my education at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University.  Thank you for supporting me all of these years as well as all of the years to come.



Emily Reineke



*                   *                   *                   *                   *


Looking Ahead 

Somerset Patriots Baseball Game

Saturday, September 14, 2013, 7:00 p.m.


Tickets:  $10

Ticket orders will start at the end of July.

If you will be away during the summer and would like to

order tickets please contact Linda Hansen at 732-636-3110.

College Survival Care Packages

Care Packages will be sent out in the fall.

Look for College Survival Care Package forms in early August.

All college students who wish to receive a care package must fill out a new form.




*                   *                   *                   *                   *




We pray, O God…


For the church across denominations and across the globe


For the well-being of all creation


For peace and justice in the world, the nations and those in authority


We pray for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, our Full Communion partners, and for the whole Church—may we find ourselves united by the Holy Spirit.


We pray for our home, the earth, which you have created and declared good, may it, and all of creation be so, be good.


We pray for those in authority, especially President Obama, Governor Christe, and Mayor Anesh.


We pray for all nations Lord, especially those in severe turmoil, such as Algeria, Syria, Egypt, and Mali.


For the poor, oppressed, sick, bereaved, lonely, and for all who suffer in body, mind, or spirit



Tom Baker

Joe Billich

Joy Billich

Agnes Czarnecki

Steven Goetz

Bob & Joan Hassard

Helen Henne

Ann Kircher

Bill Meisnest

Miriam Mentzell

Len Merlo

Alan & Nancy Moore

Jim Moore

Elsie Ohl

Dave Rapp

George Shoremount

Evelyn Troy

Gail Warren


Jim Albert, brother of John Albert

Mike Agunst, friend of Agnes Czarnecki

Holly Bowen, friend of Sharon Gianneschi

Bernie Cherry, nephew of Orvie Hoffman

Maire Cortese, aunt of John Cortese

Sal Cortese, uncle of John Cortese

Bonnie & Fred Dauncey, parents of Sandra Cortese

Brittney DeNitzio, friend of Pat Benward

Fran Hackett, friend of Bob Buck

Tom Hanlon, cousin of Barbara Pallister

Mr. & Mrs. Janisiak, friends of Marilyn Scalisi

Amy Matza, friend of Marylou Johnson

Isabelle McFarland, friend of Barbara Pallister

Dolores & Eugene Neuzil, parents of Bonnie Lombardo

Velma Nietman, mother of Linda Nietman

Milt Pearson, brother-in-law of Jean & Charles Mingle

Steve Ritter, friend of the Cortese family

Natalie Romeo, friend of Marylou Johnson

Ray & Robin Sison, daughter of Barbara Cibak

Julie Sulu, friend of Agnes Czarnecki

Al & Sharon Vastano, uncle & aunt of Melissa Cortese

Josh Waddell, friend of Linda Hansen

Beth Williscroft, friend of Agnes Czarnecki

David, friend of Barbara Pallister



Bishop Yazigi

Bishop Ibrahim


The family of Robert Sabio



For special concerns


For Bishop-elect Tracie L. Bartholomew


We pray especially for those affected by the tornadoes in Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Illinois and Iowa.




We give thanks, O God…


For the life and witness of the faithful departed


Robert Sabio



For those who made their First Communion on June 2, 2013


Matthew Benjamin, Anthony Cortese, Chase Craig, Hunter Merring, Tyler Merring, and Amy Swartz.



*                   *                   *                   *                   *


“Pub Theology” with Pastor Chris

Where:  Flanagans, 2501 Plainfield Ave., So. Plainfield

When:  Tuesday, July 9, 2013 – 8:00-9:00 PM

Topic:  The People’s Work!

This is an informal gathering for fellowship, refreshment and discussion.  It’s open to the public, so bring your friends and neighbors.